A new school year is like a clean slate, waiting for you to write your new experiences, new growth, and new learning upon it.

As you begin again, consider what new things Jesus might want to do with you in the coming weeks, months, and year.

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During the high priesthood of Annas and Caiaphas—God’s word came to John son of Zechariah in the wilderness. John went throughout the region of the Jordan River, calling for people to be baptized to show that they were changing their hearts and lives and wanted God to forgive their sins. This is just as it was written in the scroll of the words of Isaiah the prophet:

A voice crying out in the wilderness, “Prepare the way for the Lord; make his paths straight. Every valley will be filled, and every mountain and hill will be leveled. The crooked will be made straight and the rough places made smooth. All humanity will see God’s salvation.”

Luke 3:2-6

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If you are a “believer” do you need to show this? Do you have a responsibility to act as a believer? To live as one who follows Jesus?

One of the very first believers/disciples of Jesus was John the Baptist. John, actually a cousin of Jesus, felt a call (a nudge) from God to travel around the lands and tell people about Jesus and what it meant to follow him. John said, among other things, these words: “you need to SHOW that your heart and your life have changed or are changing because of this relationship you have with Jesus.”

So, yes, if we are believers, there is an expectation, a responsibility... we need to show it. Our very hearts need to shift. The way we LIVE needs to somehow reflect our belief. We need to act in ways that bring positive attention to our positive behaviors, our thoughtful words, our kinder ways of treating others and of simply being in the world!

Gina Yeager-Buckley

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Change my heart, O God. From the core of my being, I would like to change. I would like for you to help me grow – grow kinder, more thoughtful, more courageous, more lively in my love of you. I have heard your call, God. In these words today I am once again reminded of your call. I am ready to show my love. Amen.

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God has been there from the beginning of all time and is with you in each new beginning.

May the God who makes things new bless you and keep you.

May Jesus’ love shine upon you and through you.

May the Holy Spirit bring you peace.


Gina Yeager-Buckley

Gina Yeager-Buckley serves as the national Associate for Ministries with Youth for the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.).

Making Space - What a Friend

Carter Harrell

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